|Luckily Entei didn't kidnap my parents|
Focusing on Dewford, the 2nd lc, my matchups and some overviews were as follows:
1st Round: Jared Huth: Night March
This being the second tourny, and it being a long day in general, everyone was a little exhausted going into the first round of the tournament. This becomes relevent because:
|Wait, that doesn't have Safeguard|
When he was finally done, I started my turn by dropping 2 Head Ringers on his Mew and Shaymin EXs, and dropping a Sigilyph PLB to the field. Once the Sigilyph hit the field, he knew what was coming. I Juniper'd for the few tools I needed and Energy, and proceeded to use his Dimension Valley to start off the OHKO's. From here we kept a pretty steady back and forth until he ran out of Double Colorless Energy, and lost momentum severely. I took my last few prizes while he tried to manually attach Basic Energy to attack.
2nd Round: Josh Fine: Night March
Other than dumping all his resources early, this went very similar to the previous game. Tool Drop keeps pace with Night March extremely well, being able to utilize their own Dimension Valleys if you can't get your own out, and OHKO'ing their entire deck for a needed maximum of 6 tools on the board for 1 Psychic Energy. I was able to keep pace and out pace his special energy needs, and took the game once he started to run out.
3rd Round: Craig Schrader: Gengar/Trevenant
This was actually my first loss of the previous League Challenge, and I expected it to be my first loss of this one as well. I won the flip, opting to go first and getting a Head Ringer on his only Gengar EX on the field. During his turn, he got a Phantump down, but whiffed the Wally for the turn 1 Trevenant, giving me a second unexpected turn of items. I took this opportunity to get as many more tools out as I could, and force Dimension Valley to stay in play by targeting the attackers that did not have Head Ringers. When he did finally get the Trevanant on active, I had a key Lysandre for one of his benched Shaymin EX, and set up a knockout on the Trevenant when it came back active by having a Trubbish lying in wait on the bench. The combination of already having enough tools on the field to keep up, forcing Dimension Valley to stay out due to his only attacker having a Head Ringer, and being able to knockout his only Trevenant lead to me pulling out the win.
4th Round: Kevin Baxter: Archie's Blastoise
I was pretty wary about this matchup as well, as I hadn't tested against Blastoise much. Knowing he was playing the World's list and knowing he only played 2 tools total allowed me to know when I could Head Ringer key things to slow him down that slight bit. This comes in handy later...
|Whoever thought Wailord could be so cute?|
5th Round: Charles Randall Larenas-Leach: Night March
Charles Randall and I actually drove in together (this should be no surprise, as this is indeed his site), so this being finals was amusing. Him knowing how awful the matchup was for him, and knowing that my resistance was generally better than his, he proposed a tie. I took it, seeing no disadvantage, and this led to me taking 1st, and him taking 2nd, us being the only ones undefeated the whole tournament. We played a game following anyway, and he never actually saw any Double Colorless the entire game. He took a knockout with a Mew/Dimension Valley/Lightning Energy, but never saw any other energy for the remainder of the game.
Here are also some key card counts that I think worked especially well:
4 Trubbish PLS: Getting as many tools out as possible to hit high numbers will
7 Psychic Energy: This, combined with Dimension Valley, usually keeps you attacking the entire game. If need be, you can even slap 2 Hard Charms, 1 Muscle Band on a Sigilyph and 2HKO EX's for 2 energy and resist 40 damage (60 against Fighting).
3 Sigilyph: I didn't need to max out these in the slightest. I could either attach Head Ringers to my opponent's board to push up my damage, or OHKO their non EX for less tools. Useful, but not the key focus.
1 Super Rod: I actually played Sacred Ash for the tournament, but realized I would at most be putting in 3 Trubbish, average 2.5.
|One of the more overlooked gains in Expanded|
2 Eco Arm: There were times I would discard these early on, but when I could use them, it was fantastic. They can shuffle in Muscle Bands, Floats, Head Ringers, and even Life Dew. Getting 3 tools back may not win you the game, but it certainly helps.
1 Garbodor: Pyroar and Bats exist, and when all else fails, you can always hinder your opponent's Shaymins. I found it especially useful against Night March's Mews, to force them to either not attack a turn, or use up all their DCEs super quick.
The rest was mostly just consistency. Consistency is really key, especially in Expanded.